The core shopper at discount retailer Family Dollar is a single-income mom with an annual household income of less than $40,000. To boost sales of its products among those consumers at Family Dollar stores, Procter & Gamble and agency Upshot found a perfect spokesperson in hurdler Lolo Jones, who was competing for Team USA in the 2012 Summer Olympics.
Jones’s grandfather had worked for Family Dollar, and her mother—a hard-working single mom like many of the retailer’s customers—remains a Family Dollar shopper. Jones’s aspirational story was certain to resonate with Family Dollar customers; to make sure those consumers heard the story and associated it with its brands, P&G launched a microsite, followlolorun.com, which focused on Jones’s struggles to reach the Olympics and her gratitude to her mother.
In-store signage, the Family Dollar website, and Family Dollar and Jones’s Facebook pages drove traffic to the microsite and highlighted special promotions of P&G products at the stores; the P&G product promotions were also featured in five freestanding inserts throughout the four-month campaign. And Jones announced via a nationwide satellite media tour that P&G and Family Dollar were donating $25,000 to a youth sports fund.
The campaign emphasized that Jones faced just as many hurdles off the track as on, many of them similar to the challenges faced by Family Dollar shoppers, but that with the support of her mother, she was able to clear them. That message certainly connected with Family Dollar customers: Jones and the sponsorship program generated 250 million media impressions. In terms of sales, P&G had been hoping for an increase of $12 million, or 6% IYA; it achieved a $20 million surge in sales, a 9% increase IYA.